[The following are two chapters from my new book in progress]
The Common Concept of the Laying on of Hands
“In Christianity, the laying on of hands (Greek: cheirotonia – χειροτονία, literally, “laying-on of hands”) is both a symbolic and formal method of invoking the Holy Spirit primarily during baptisms and confirmations, healing services, blessings, and ordination of priests, ministers, elders, deacons, and other church officers, along with a variety of other church sacraments and holy ceremonies.
In the New Testament the laying on of hands was associated with Christ healing the sick (Luke 4:40) and after his ascension, the receiving of the Holy Spirit (See Acts 8:14–19). Initially the Apostles laid hands on new believers as well as believers. (See Acts 6:5–6). In the early church, the practice continued and is still used in a wide variety of church ceremo nies, such as during confirmation” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_laying_on_of_hands).
This is a typical encyclopedia rendering of this doctrine. They all say about the same thing. But, really, is that all there is? Surely not. It has always been my experience that whatever churchianity teaches on a biblical subject, the whole truth is not in it. They clothed their half-truths in sheep’s clothing, warm, white and self-assured. But inwardly, those half-truths lead His people astray. This is not to say that all of the clergy nor all of the laity are guilty of this. For many are very sincere and are searching for the truth.
Nevertheless, now that man’s understanding of this topic has been broached, let us see where the Spirit of Truth wants to take us concerning the laying on of hands. Do we really think that the early apostles went for all of the formalized mumbo-jumbo of Pharisaical Judaism? And since there is nothing new under the sun, and since Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, should we His followers today acquiesce to what mainstream churchianity says about the laying on of hands? Do we honestly believe that the Holy Spirit can be conjured up at will by our words and our hands—hands, defiled by formalized religious practices (Isa. 1: 11-18). The sin-soiled hands of the clergy are laid upon the heads of the little lambs. May God lift us up to see this teaching as He sees it, according to His word.
Isaiah’s Prescient Preface to the Doctrine of Laying on of Hands
Before we can get to the deeper levels of understanding concerning the “laying on of hands,” we must examine why man’s attempt to employ this teaching falls woefully short. We look to Isaiah 1 for answers. It goes to the root of the problem.
First, as with all of the prophets, it is the Spirit of our Savior who speaks through Isaiah. Understanding this is paramount to receiving more revelatory truth. “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (II Pet. 1: 21; I Pet. 1: 11). And because it is the Spirit of Christ ministering through the words that the prophet Isaiah penned down, we His body can receive understanding from Christ Himself.
Isaiah 1 is a vision in which Yahweh laments for His people who had rebelled against Him. He says that even dumb animals know who feeds them and where to go to get that feed. “But Israel does not know, My people do not consider (1: 1-3).
Isaiah 1 is a cautionary tale that glimpses into the heart of a people and presciently instructs you and me to not do what they did. It speaks down through the centuries to us “upon whom the ends of the world are come.”
The Spirit likens their rebellion to a physical sickness. The whole nation is sick because “they have forsaken Yahweh.” And the Spirit describes this sickness: “The whole head is sick.” The mind of the leaders and the people is eaten up with corrupt thoughts. “The whole heart is faint.” The very core and center of the people is weakened and puny because of self-centeredness. “The sole of the foot even to the head, there is not soundness in it; but wounds and bruises and putrefying sores…” And they have not been given medical aid to bind up those wounds (vs. 4-6). This extended metaphor tells us that the sickness of His people is complete. The whole nation has contracted this illness. What illness could infect the entire nation?
He reveals the grave spiritual sickness in one statement: “Ah sinful nation” (v. 4). The sin nature was contracted at birth. It is the root and core of why His people have rebelled against Him. The Spirit is saying, “Because of your sin, ‘your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence’ [sound familiar?] (v. 7). And if it were not for ‘a very small remnant, we should have been Sodom…’ (v. 9).
Lifeless Religious Liturgies
The whole nation is sick in sin. And then in the very next breath, the Spirit of Christ lays it out there, exposing the phony, lifeless, futile religious liturgies that both the clergy and laity participated in under the old testament law: animal sacrifice, the vain oblations, the incense, the burnt offerings, the Sabbaths, and the solemn assemblies. He calls all of these actions of 760 B.C. temple worship “iniquity.” It troubles Him. He hates all of this (vs. 11-14).
And echoing down through the centuries, His Spirit still calls the religious liturgies practiced today “iniquity.” That would include the laying on of hands as seen in the encyclopedia article above.
Why does He call it iniquity? Because the priests and people are still sinning. The pastors tell the flock of churchgoers that they cannot live without sinning. Therefore, their worship is soiled and tainted and unacceptable because their hearts are soiled with sin. “Ah sinful nation” still applies. Only the remnant in Isaiah’s day had changed their ways and repented and walked in the faith, believing that His Spirit can and does live in them. In Isaiah’s day, the names and exploits of the remnant were immortalized in the pages of the Bible. Today His remnant will fulfill and dramatize those illustrious pages of scripture.
Christ Gets Angry
And so it is today. The Spirit of Christ that spoke through Isaiah continues to speak to us because our nation has provoked Him to anger (v. 4). Christ gets angry? Yes. Just think: money changers at the temple, tables turned over, sharp rebukes flying through the air. I can see Him rebuking today’s televangelists, who preach the prosperity doctrine. Send us your money, they say, and God will multiply more money coming back to you. Sow the seed of faith by giving us your money and you will harvest 100 fold. What a lie! What an abomination! They are nothing more than modern day money changers. Where is the outcry from the pulpits? Why do the sheep get sheared so blatantly without even a word of protest?
So, yes, I believe that Christ would be rebuking the religious leaders of today the way He rebuked the Pharisees and Sadducees 2,000 years ago. He said to them, “You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you will do.” Remember that these are the most powerful religious leaders of that time and place. They were the chief priests and rabbis with the power of life and death over the laity. And Christ said that they are the sons of the devil. The devil “was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it” (John 8: 44). Wow. You talking about fearless.
And so, the Spirit still is speaking: The prosperity doctrine is a false doctrine from the devil. It cheapens the beauty of God’s grace in giving us the true law of harvest—but they pervert it, saying that you can receive financial blessings by “sowing” seed money into their ministry. That is a lie from the father of all lies! And it is a horrible deception that has gone out all over the world. And these false teachers will turn right around and lay their hands on the lambs of God and pronounce great things for them as they become “partners” in the deception. Can we now see how the devil perverts things like the laying on of hands? No wonder God is angry. There is no justice in the land while deceit and lies run rampant.
It Is Always about the Sin
It is sin that we are talking about. Christ always brought up sin in the conversation. And He would today, just like He did in Isaiah’s day. He changes not. He would ask our sinful nation today, Why are you still in sin? Why are you still sinning? I am manifested to take away your sins, and in Me there is no sin (I John 3: 5). ]
Because Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, He would say to the sinful nation today: “You say that you are washed in My blood. And yet you still break My Ten Commandments. You say that you are following Me, and yet you hide secret desires that will destroy you. You say you are born again, and have been baptized, and have joined a church, but you are still struggling with sins that yield guilty thoughts and a troubled conscience.
“Something is wrong in your thinking. For you say that the Bible is the word of God and that you believe every word of it, and yet you do the opposite of what my word says to do. And you say, Well, my pastor says that no one can keep the law. Nobody’s perfect; everyone sins.
“But you do err, for you neither know the scriptures nor the power of God. Either My blood is powerful enough to cleanse you from all sins along with your sin nature, or it is not. And you have forgotten that with man it is impossible, but with God all things are possible. All things.
“So bring no more of those solemn ceremonies and ecstatic praises and rituals and traditions and baptisms and laying on of hands, for sin still stains the hearts of both the pastors and their flocks. ‘When you spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you…when you make many prayers, I will not hear…’ But My hand is still stretched out. ‘Wash and make yourselves clean. Take your evil deeds out of my sight; stop doing wrong. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow…” (1: 16-18).
“If you repent, you may join My remnant, My elect, My chosen. They will walk in the light of Love. I am the Seed and they are the harvest. They will restore all things and help usher in the kingdom of God. And they will rule and reign with Me. They repented of their sins and walked in faith, and as the body of Christ, they became the hands of God—hands destined to be laid upon a sick and dying earth.
[These are the opening chapters of the “Laying on of Hands” doctrine. It is not what we have been lead to believe it is. It is far more elevated, created in the heart of God for astounding results. These chapters are excerpts from my new book coming out, hopefully this fall. We wait on the Spirit, for without Him I cannot write this. It is called The Apostles’ Doctrine. Its contents illuminate our path to nothing less than perfection, which is spiritual maturity. Like the other books that I have written for the elect, this book is seminal for the harvest of His manifested sons and daughters. I highly recommend that you first read The Royal Destiny of God’s Elect, available to you free with free shipping. All I need is your mailing address sent to my email… firstname.lastname@example.org I will advise as to when The Apostles’ Doctrine is finished and published. It is free with free shipping, as well. Kenneth Wayne Hancock ]